You ARE Traffic

I’ve been feeling stuck lately.  Not that I haven’t been busy and productive but … I’ve been feeling like I haven’t had time to reflect, learn from what I’m doing and relax into the moment.  It’s all aspects of my life; home, work, friends, family.

I didn’t even realize I was stuck until I wrote a blog this week about some things I was learning through at work (engaging with the media), sent it to my editor in chief (Jim Fellows) and got his feedback.  He said, “It feels flat. Whats your message, how will this resonate with your audience, what are you trying to say?”  I’ve been thinking about this for days and the answer is … I don’t know. I was simply reporting on my life as it stands today.  Thats when I realized I’m stuck.

So, what do I do to get unstuck?

A few things are nudging me in the right direction but I’m not quite there yet (my word of the year! yet!) …

    • I had the opportunity to go to a Wellness Seminar.  They talked about being mindful, taking ownership of where you are at and the part you play in whats happening around you.  The presenter had a great analogy – she said, “people always complain about traffic. But, there YOU are sitting in your car, at the stop light, complaining about traffic.  You ARE traffic!”   I love that! No matter how benign our role is, how good a driver you are, how careful you are …when you get your car, you become traffic.
    • Jimmy has always been a contrarian and being 16 is amplifying this trait.  He has started to identify as conservative. If you have read my blog at all, you’ll know I’m fairly liberal.  This has resulted in almost nightly political discussions at the dinner table.  Pro Life/Choice, Gun Control, Fiscal Responsibility … you name it.  He’s started going to Christian club before school and wants to start a conservative club at Hopkins (of all places!!).  I was sharing this latest development with a co-worker who is also fairly liberal.  We talked about if this just might be Jimmy’s way of rebelling (WAY better than other ways to rebel but still exhausting). He said “he can’t get your goat if he doesn’t know where its tied”.
    • Earlier this week some said to me – Perfect is the enemy of good (adjusted from Voltaire).  I realized, I’ve been trying to hard to write the “perfect” blog. Give the “perfect” feedback, find the “perfect” solution to a problem at work … spoiler alert – thats NOT POSSIBLE! All it does it get me spun up. This blog is a great example, I’m not 100% happy with it (but I’m putting it out there anyway)!

How are these helping me get unstuck?  They remind me that I shouldn’t take things so personally, I need to look at my role in what’s happening around me and I need to be resilient, sticking with this until I figure it out.

I’m going to try a few new things and see if they work.

  • Push through and acknowledge that I’m stuck (this blog!)
  • Take 4 deep breaths before I start each meeting (starting next week)
  • Give myself a break, reminding myself that that good (enough) is really better than perfect. I can write a blog that makes most of my points, but isnt perfectly astute. I can give feedback that helps a person move forward and I can find a good next step solution without having to solve the whole problem at once.

What do you do to get unstuck?  I need all the nudging I can get!

(Also, as an aside, I know the image that I used for this blog doesn’t have anything to do with the content. I just like it.  My mom painted it and is showing it in an art show next week.  She’s an amazing artist. Go Mom Go!!!)